Friday, August 28, 2009

RIP Edward Kennedy

Perhaps this post is a little out of character - a post on national politics and seemingly not particularily personal. Typically most national politics really doesn't affect my life very directly. I'd have to say that is not the case when it comes to the body of work that Senator Kennedy acheived in his career. Laws that have to do with the rights of the disabled have massive impact on my life and on the lives of special needs children (like msk) and adults. It's hard to overstate how different our lives would be if msk was not getting educated, which would be the case if there was no IDEA law. It's hard to imagine msk's future without the ADA law. These are laws that Senator Kennedy was instrumental in developing and getting passed. If you're interested in seeing his history in Disability Rights you need to look at his position page. If he had done nothing else in his life (and that's certainly not the case - he's dedication to almost all social justice issues is easy to see), he would be a hero to me.

Rest in peace.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Finishing up summer

Two and a half weeks until the first day of school. For the first time in years all three of my kids will be in the same schools as they were last year, so no new school anxiety to deal with. Another miracle is that none of the three schools disasterous placements, so we won't be spending this year making plans and counting the minutes to get a kid out of one school and into another. That's not to say that won't be moving into new schools a year from now, but it'll be because we've aged out as opposed to finding an escape path. That's a topic for future posts, for now it's time to coast into the end of summer.

Time for our ten days of vacation, away from the city and computers and such. Time for hiking, swimming, kayaks, reading, board games... you get the picture. I'm looking forward to some one on one time with my special kid where I am taught the beauty of time moving slowly. With autistic kids there's a feeling of perservative behaviors being a problem, a deficit. I've found that being with a child as they work on making sure every rock by the side of the stream is completely splashed is a lot like a zen meditation. Slowly you let go of the nagging worries and the plans and the voices. Finally you just exist in the now. It's pretty inspirational, really.

Tubing Broad Creek

My feet submerged, find sun amidst the shade
As rushing noise drowns calls if I would try
No matter – his response would not be made
I stand guard waiting for him to float by

The cooling water rushes - needs to go
The boy stretches my gaze, I stand and wait
Like Holden in the rye my time moves slow'
A catcher, lone and patient is my fate

When young I could not fathom how one’d dream
Of blocking cliffs so kids could play all day
I now find comfort standing in this stream
Sun warmed and water cooled I gaze and sway

In stillness watch, commitment holds no fear
In sparseness my true purpose becomes clear